Even before the first clanger of a pun had been dropped, it was clear that Wednesday’s episode of The Great British Bake Off would be a dramatic one. The previous show had ended on a preview of judge Mary Berry’s noncommittal “that’s sort of unacceptable”, which only in the twisted world of Bake Off could be a thrilling portent. Rumours quickly began circulating of a great betrayal – an act of deceit that would out-scandal even the great custard heist of series four.
And the scandal did not disappoint. It was everything a romantic could have hoped for: an old country house, heartbreak, melodrama, futility and a tormented, bearded young man striding moodily through the English countryside. A nation wrung its hands in glee.